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FutureLearn adds brand new, free courses for the New Year

FutureLearn, the first UK-led provider of massive open online courses (MOOCs), has today added to its line up of free courses, available to learners around the world. Developed by some of the world’s leading universities, the nine new titles are all scheduled to begin in January and February next year. They join FutureLearn’s existing web-based offering which covers a broad spectrum of disciplines, including Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths (STEM), Business & Management, Education and Humanities.

Learners can sign up for the new courses now on The website went live as an open beta in September, offering free higher education level study to anyone interested in learning, including current and prospective university students, working professionals and leisure learners.

Together with previously released titles, this new set brings the number of free courses currently available on FutureLearn to 29. FutureLearn will continue to add new courses to its line up throughout the year.

Nine brand new courses are announced today and will begin in January and February 2014:

  • Shakespeare’s Hamlet: text, performance and culture, from the University of Birmingham (13 January)
  • Preparing for uni, from the University of East Anglia (20 January)
  • Good brain, bad brain: Basics, from the University of Birmingham (27 January)
  • Exploring our oceans, from the University of Southampton (3 February)              
  • Teaching Computing, Part 1, from the University of East Anglia (3 February)
  • Exploring anatomy: The human abdomen, from the University of Leeds (10 February)
  • Understanding drugs and addiction, from King’s College London (17 February)
  • A beginner’s guide to English for university study, from Reading University (17 February)
  • Good brain, bad brain: Parkinson’s disease, from the University of Birmingham (24 February)

They join a list of previously announced courses scheduled for January and February:

  • Sustainability, society and you, from the University of Nottingham (6 January)
  • Introduction to forensic science, from the University of Strathclyde (6 January)
  • The secret power of brands, from the University of East Anglia (6January) [2nd run]
  • Web science: How the web is changing the world, from the University of Southampton (10February)  [2nd run]
  • Climate change: Challenges and solutions, from the University of Exeter (13 January)
  • Critical listening for studio production, from Queen’s University Belfast (13 January)
  • Inside cancer: how genes influence cancer development, from the University of Bath (20 January)
  • Causes of war, from King’s College London (27 January)
  • Corpus linguistics: Method, analysis, interpretation, from Lancaster University (27 January)
  • The discovery of the Higgs boson, from the University of Edinburgh (10 February)

Simon Nelson, Chief Executive of FutureLearn said, “We’ll be consistently building on our course line up, working closely with our university partners to make sure that FutureLearn offers something for everyone.”

The FutureLearn course experience centres on social interaction, whereby people learn actively by engaging in conversations around the learning material. The website has also been designed to work on smartphones and tablets, as well as desktop computers, so that learners can enjoy the same high quality user experience, regardless of their screen size.

FutureLearn is wholly owned by The Open University. The website combines the best elements of the social web with The Open University’s 44 years of expertise in distance and open learning.

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